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Old 01-15-2008, 06:21 PM
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Exclamation Amnesty urges Iran to end “grotesque” practice of stoning

Amnesty urges Iran to end “grotesque” practice of stoning

Tue. 15 Jan 2008

Iran Focus

London, Jan. 15 – A prominent international human rights organisations on Tuesday urged Iran to abolish the “grotesque and unacceptable” practice of stoning.

Amnesty International said that currently nine women and two men in Iran are awaiting to be stoned to death, adding that the “horrific practice” was “specifically designed to increase the suffering of the victims”.

In a new report published today, the organisation called on the authorities urgently to repeal or amend the country's Penal Code to put an end to stoning.

“Iran's Penal Code prescribes execution by stoning. It even dictates that the stones are large enough to cause pain, but not so large as to kill the victim immediately. Article 102 of the Penal Code states that men should be buried up to their waists and women up to their breasts for the purpose of execution by stoning. Article 104 states, with reference to the penalty for adultery, that the stones used should ‘not be large enough to kill the person by one or two strikes; nor should they be so small that they could not be defined as stones’”, Amnesty said.

“The serious failings in the justice system commonly result in unfair trials, including in capital cases”, it added.

Despite official denials, Amnesty said that since 2002 stoning sentences continued to be implemented in Iran.

It cited the case of Ja'far Kiani who was stoned to death on 5 July 2007 in the village of Aghche-kand, near Takestan in Qazvin province. He had been convicted of committing adultery with Mokarrameh Ebrahimi, with whom he had two children and who was also sentenced to death by stoning.

Amnesty added, “A woman and a man are known to have been stoned to death in Mashhad [north-eastern Iran] in May 2006”.

“The majority of those sentenced to death by stoning are women. Women suffer disproportionately from such punishment. One reason is that they are not treated equally before the law and courts, in clear violation of international fair trial standards. They are particularly vulnerable to unfair trials because they are more likely than men to be illiterate and therefore more likely to sign confessions to crimes they did not commit. Discrimination against women in other aspects of their lives also leaves them more susceptible to conviction for adultery,” Amnesty said.
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